The US Department of Energy (DoE) is to provide up to $60 million over two years to develop the conceptual design of the initial nuclear fuel recycling centre and advanced recycling reactor as part of the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP) programme.

Studies will include scope, schedule and cost information of the proposed facilities and will also identify technological needs that will be used to implement GNEP’s Research & Development (R&D) activities.

In conjunction with the conceptual design studies, the recipients of funding will also develop technology development roadmaps to describe the state of the current technology, perform a technology “gap” analysis, and define the methods and plans to acquire technology needed to achieve the GNEP goals.

Announcing the move deputy energy secretary Clay Sell said: “By further engaging engineering and design experts in the nuclear industry, we can spur radical development of new nuclear recycling technologies that are more proliferation-resistant and economically attractive.”

Three to six awards are expected to be determined later this year with applications for funding due by 22 June.

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